Friday, January 06, 2006

SC asks RNA for answers for submitting false reports

Kathmandu Jan 6- The Supreme Court Thursday ordered the Ministry of Defence, the headquarters of the Royal Nepalese Army and the Bhairavnath and Rajdalgan barracks to explain why they had submitted false reports in the court on the detention of four persons.

“Submit explanations on why you fabricated false reports on the detention of the detainees,” the court ordered.

A division bench of justices Ram Prasad Shrestha and Top Bahadur Magar issued the order after the information came to the SC’s notice through a report it obtained from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

In replies to the court regarding the arrest of Ranjit Darnal, Amrit Darnal, Rajendra Chaurel and Pushpa Raj Basnet in response to the habeas corpus writ petition, the Legal Unit chief of the RNA, BA Kumar Sharma, and the two barracks had told the court the four were not in detention.

A few days ago, an NHRC inspection team had found the four in these two barracks and had submitted its finding to the court.

The NHRC report also stated that the four were detained without following legal procedures and the authorities provided them neither legal facilities nor allowed them to meet lawyers and their relatives. “They were taken under custody beyond the constitutional grounds,” the report stated.

Plainclothes security personnel had arrested them two years ago from different places in Kathmandu valley.

Mainwhile The Royal Nepalese Army (RNA) has said that it is deeply concerned over the media reports regarding the statement issued by National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), which states that 14 people disappeared by the state were found in the RNA barracks.

A press statement issued by Directorate of Public Relations (DPR) of RNA Friday morning said that the names of the people in detention mentioned in the statement issued by the NHRC were given either to the National Human Rights Commission, Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) or the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) at a prior date.

“The Directorate of Public Relations would like to state that information regarding the detention of Hom Prakash Shrestha of Rukum district, Man Bahadur Malla of Salyan, Jaya Bahadur Gharti and Kal Bahadur Gharti of Rolpa and Chakra Bahadur Thapa of Udaypur following their surrender was given to the NHRC on 26 December 2005,” the statement added.

The statement further said the detention of Dutta Bahadur Budha, Harischandra Budha and Bharat Pandey of Jumla district, Balram Chaudhari of Kailali, Ganesh Prasad Sharma of Dailekh, Buddhiman Sarki of Dolpa and Chhabisara Sunar of Bardia was notified by the RNA to the OHCHR and the ICRC.

The statement said that Krishna Prasad Mainali of Kailali district and Jit Bahadur Thapa of Palpa district surrendered to the security forces on 24 October 05 and 16 December 05 respectively and are being kept in the Jag Dal barrack for their personal security.
“Their names are in the process of being updated with the NHRC, OHCHR and ICRC,” the statement added.

The NHRC on Wednesday said that it found altogether 14 disappeared persons detained in the two barracks--nine persons including one woman in Jagdal Battalion and five men in Mahabir Battalion during their inspection to two Royal Nepalese Army (RNA) barracks.
The DPR also said, “The DPR regrets media reports appearing in the press today, which could have been deliberately aimed at tarnishing the image of the country’s army by misinterpreting the NHRC statement.”

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